Wednesday, January 19, 2011

A Simpler Era?

The turn of the last century must have been a kind of idyllic time before the onslaught and disillusionment of The First World War.

When I saw the Magpie prompt this week, of ladies in Victorian era bustles and crinolines, laced collars and wools, I was reminded of The Road to Avonlea television series broadcast from 1990 - 1996 by the CBC and the Disney Channel.

Kevin Sullivan, the creator, had earlier brought Lucy Maude Montgomery's Anne of Green Gables and its sequel to the movie screen in 1985 and '87.

The series takes place in a fictional, small town of Avonlea, Prince Edward Island and set in 1903-1912. The show was a delight for my family including our two young daughters. We saw romance kindled on the skating pond, drama on the farm amidst the elements, and intrigue among the people of the village.

Montgomery's novel Anne of Green Gables published in 1908 has sold more than 50 million copies, been translated in most languages, and studied in schools around the world. She found her inspiration for the book on an old piece of paper that she had written at a young age, describing a couple who were mistakenly sent an orphan girl instead of a boy. Fortunately they decided to keep the most gifted child.

One is encouraged to think about how much our world has changed in the last 100 years and how much it has stayed the same.